Cork's Marina Park will be as big as Dublin Zoo

The completed Marina Park will be six times larger than Fitzgerald’s Park and equivalent in size to Dublin Zoo covering over 32 hectares or 70 acres
Cork's Marina Park will be as big as Dublin Zoo

Marina Park Phase 2. The Pier. Pic: Cork City Council.

RESIDENTS communities, businesses, and other key stakeholders are being invited to share their views on the next phase of the Marina Park, which when completed will be six times larger than Fitzgerald’s Park and equivalent in size to Dublin Zoo.

Cork City Council yesterday published a planning notice seeking Part 8 planning permission for the project, which the Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Colm Kelleher said will “provide an unparalleled quality of public space to residents of and visitors to the city and region”.

Based around the themes of activity, accessibility, ecology, and culture, this next and final phase of development will extend from the Atlantic Pond to Church Avenue and will accommodate picnic areas, adventure play areas, new paths, a preserved marshland zone and the restoration of several architectural heritage sites.

The proposed park has several built heritage structures: Barrington’s Folly, the slipway at Dundanion Castle, a boat house, an old quay wall and boundary walls as well as the Atlantic Pond, marsh, woodland, and open meadow areas.

Marina Park Phase 2. Slipway and Barington Castle. Pic: Cork City Council.
Marina Park Phase 2. Slipway and Barington Castle. Pic: Cork City Council.

The works would include the restoration and preservation of such heritage structures and the creation of a heritage trail to highlight the unique history of the Marina.

Other main works of the project would include the upgrading and creation of accessible, formal and informal paths and trails throughout the park; improvement works to the Atlantic Pond area; the provision of a nature playground as well as various play areas throughout the park; the ecological management of the meadows, woodlands and marsh areas to promote and increase the biodiversity of the area and the provision of public lighting and feature lighting.

Commenting on the plans, chief executive of Cork City Council, Ann Doherty said the development of Marina Park, covering 70 acres when completed, “offers an unrivalled urban amenity just 2.5 kilometres from the city centre” and is “a key economic driver and catalyst for Cork Docklands”.

“We want to create an iconic ‘eco-park’ with a strong identity and a connection to local nature and history which will bolster the quality of all our lives,” she added.

The first phase of Marina Park was officially opened by Taoiseach Micheál Martin last month.

Speaking to The Echo about the plans for phase two, Independent councillor and historian Kieran McCarthy said he is pleased that Barrington’s Folly is incorporated.

“The folly is a unique structure to explore dating to over 200 years ago, but the possibility of creating paths around it and showcasing the last remains of the swampland in the area is one I and other colleagues have been pushing for a few years,” he said.

Marina Park Phase 2. Woodland North Platform. Pic: Cork City Council.
Marina Park Phase 2. Woodland North Platform. Pic: Cork City Council.

“I also love the idea of a nature focussed playground.

“Creating something fun orientated towards our youth but also educational when it comes to climate action is very innovative.

“The Marina district is now shaping up to be something quite unique for the city and region with a pedestrianised walkway surrounded by small park areas with varied amenities in them to enjoy for everyone,” Mr McCarthy continued.

Submissions and observations with respect to the proposed development, dealing with the proper planning and sustainable development of the area in which the development is situated, may be made in writing to Senior Engineer, Infrastructure Development, City Hall, Cork.

They should be clearly marked ‘Marina Park Phase 2’.

They cak also be submitted at consult.corkcity.ie.

The closing date for all submissions is Friday the 19th of August 2022 at 4pm.

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